The dog is indulging in his favorite pastime again – licking my face. Make no mistake about the fact that this four legged and furry baby is loved but the raspy tongue and the revolting drool on my face is really disgusting. Licking is one of the ways by which dogs can learn about their environment but this pet of mine really takes a big slice of the cake when it comes to licking.

Licking is a habit learned by dogs from puppyhood. The mother dog’s tongue is used not unlike a washcloth to clean the puppies. After defecating and urinating, the anal area of the puppies will be licked by the dam. Experts tell us that mother dogs would instinctively lick puppies to aid their digestion and circulation processes. Puppies on the other hand, have learned to lick the mother dog whenever they want to nurse. About to be weaned puppies will lick the mother dog’s lips to encourage regurgitation. You can be sure that your pet loves you because licking is done to show affection. The instinctive licking of the mother dog to a pup that has crawled away is a visible sign of affection. Puppies will be seen licking the dam and the littermates.

It is perfectly normal for dogs to show affection through licking. Dogs that have closely bonded with their owners consider humans as their family. The mother dog and the littermates that were once the recipient of the dog’s wet tongue are now replaced by the human family. The dog licks you because you are now his family. If your dog licks you it means that the pet is well loved and receiving the best care from you as dogs that do not receive the same treatment from their masters are less inclined to lick human.

You know that your pet is a pack oriented animal. Dogs would need to have a well defined hierarchy and you are recognized by the pet as the leader of the pack. Apparently, the dog’s inclination to lick you is a show of submission. Licking can also be the dog’s way of gaining your approval or attention. Dogs in a household with more pets often manifest the need to secure the affection of the master. The pets would vie with each other for the attention of the master.

Licking though can be a less than pleasant habit of a pet that also has the inclination to eat feces and other things considered disgusting by humans. This concern will be aggravated by the dog’s inclination to drink from the toilet bowl. These are disgusting habits and naturally you would want to stop the pet from licking you.

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